Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Cardiac rehabilitation in women

state of the art and strategies to overcome the current barriers

Galati, Alfonsoa; Piccoli, Marab; Tourkmani, Nidalc; Sgorbini, Lucaa; Rossetti, Antonellaa; Cugusi, Luciad; Bellotto, Fabioc; Mercuro, Giusepped; Abreu, Anae; D’Ascenzi, Flaviof,g on behalf of the Working Group on Cardiac Rehabilitation of the Italian Society of Cardiology

Journal of Cardiovascular Medicine: December 2018 - Volume 19 - Issue 12 - p 689–697
doi: 10.2459/JCM.0000000000000730

Cardiac rehabilitation is able to reduce cardiovascular mortality, and improves functional capacity and quality of life. However, cardiac rehabilitation participation rates are low and the current evidence has demonstrated sex differences for the access to cardiac rehabilitation programs. In this review, we discuss the benefits of cardiac rehabilitation in women with a specific focus on ischemic heart disease, heart failure, cardiac rehabilitation after cardiac surgery and after transcatheter aortic valve implantation, and peripheral artery disease. We also analyse the current limitations to cardiac rehabilitation for women in terms of accessibility and indications, reporting general, sex-specific, and healthcare-related barriers. Finally, we discuss the potential solutions and areas of development for the coming years.

aCardiac Rehabilitation Villa Betania-Giomi Hospital

bCardiology Department, Grassi Hospital, Rome

cABL, Swiss Prestige International Medical Centre-Guangzhou, China

dDepartment of Medical Sciences and Public Health, University of Cagliari, Italy

eHospital Santa Marta, CHLC, Cardiology Service, Rua Santa Marta, Lisboa, Portugal

fDepartment of Medical Biotechnologies, Division of Cardiology, University of Siena

gUniversity of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Chianciano, Siena, Italy

Correspondence to Flavio D’Ascenzi, MD, PhD, FESC, Department of Medical Biotechnologies, Division of Cardiology, University of Siena, Viale M. Bracci, 16 53100 Siena, Italy Tel: +39 0577585377; fax: +39 0577585377; e-mail:

Received 17 June, 2018

Accepted 2 October, 2018

© 2018 Italian Federation of Cardiology. All rights reserved.